Mike Ross is out of the field for his position in Congress. The announcement today did not surprise many people expecting Ross to make a run for Governor of Arkansas. It also did not surprise Republicans keenly aware that redistricting in Ross’ area will likely bring in some areas normally voting Republican. Ross is a smart politician able to see the writing on the wall, or maybe the painting since Arkansas’ Republicans have a goal of painting the state red and so far have been showing great success with the brush.
The last election placed Ross across from Republican Challenger Rankin. When the smoke cleared, Ross was the lone Democrat standing in Congress for Arkansas. Rankin supporters, realizing the margin was closing in before the election, quietly put away their Rankin for Congress signs to wait. The Red Headed Republican from south Arkansas has not made her motives known publically, but many supporters hoped for a Rankin / Ross rematch. Ross, now surrounded by Republican Congress members in his home state, has decided to opt out and shoot for the governor’s office.
Democrats will be scrambling to find a candidate to replace Ross. Many in the Texarkana area will likely look at the possibility of a Harrelson run, but there could be other contenders waiting in the shadows. For many Republicans the calls, emails, letters, and even web blogs like this one will quickly target that certain Red Headed Republican named Rankin to run one more time.